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Edward VI shilling

This is the first of three Edward VI shillings, all of which were unearthed by Roger Paul during a detecting career spanning 40 years. Rather than being found as a group, each coin came from a different site on a different date. And, each of them is an example of the scarce (as a detecting find) debased profile issue.

Coin number one was struck at the Southwark mint and has mint mark Y on both sides. On the reverse is the date in Roman numerals (MDL), which translates as 1550. This date is rarer than the other date for this type – 1549.

Several different busts appear on profile shilling and most are very similar to each other, so they can cause much confusion. The bust on this coin looks like number 3 but in English Coins 1180-1551 Lord Stewartby lists only busts 5 and 6 for shillings dated 1550.


In the Standard Catalogue this shilling is listed as number 2466B. However, this reference number includes a number of varieties and the price (£175 in Fine condition) is for the commonest.

On both sides of this coin there are well struck and badly struck areas. Additionally, a few scratches show up, most noticeably on the reverse. Having pointed out some minus points, this is actually not a bad example of an Edward IV debased issue shilling. It’s also a rarity, so my pre-sale auction estimate wouldn’t be any lower than £250 – £300.

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